A 10-win season concluded on Saturday for Bemidji girls hockey as the #8 Lumberjacks were defeated 8-1 by #1 Roseau in a Section 8AA quarterfinal at the Rams Sports Center.
The Rams bolted to a 1-0 lead after a mere 47 seconds off a one-timer from Memphis Mertens in the high slot after Roseau’s top line put on some early pressure.
A wall of players in front of Nettie Kimble in the Bemidji net helped initially snuff out another chance later in the period, but Celine Stroot’s turnaround wrister slipped in to make it 2-0 at 8:13.
The Rams added another goal at 10:27, this time shorthanded, when Olivia Urness put a shot off the glove of Kimble on a rush. Bemidji answered back only 26 seconds later, as Lexi Leitner walked into the slot off a pass from Austyn Tobey and ripped in an effort off the bar at even-strength.
Roseau did not need long to get the goal right back. Off the ensuing face-off, Kayla Santl snatched a loose puck and blazed into the offensive zone to set up Kate Helgeson for a backhander past Kimble to give the Rams a 4-1 edge.
The first period wrapped with a solo effort by Mariah Huglen with just under a minute to go that gave Roseau a 5-1 lead at first intermission.
Only one goal was scored in the second, courtesy of future Bemidji State forward Anika Stoskopf to extend the lead for the Rams.
Fellow future Beaver Santl was active creating and scoring as she finished with three points on the night, but also had to contend with some good saves from Kimble early in the third period.
Santl broke through for a goal at the 8:03 mark of the third, her team-leading 39th of the season.
There was enough time left for one more late goal from the Rams, scored on the power play from Urness with less than a minute remaining.
Kimble finished with 38 saves on 45 shots before Payton Weidemann came in with around two minutes remaining to make two saves on three shots. Roseau held a 48-15 advantage in shots in the game.
Bemidji’s season finishes at 10-16, the most wins the Lumberjacks have had in a season since also going 10-16 in 2015/16. Roseau’s win was its third-straight against the Lumberjacks in an 8AA quarterfinal game and puts the Rams into a semifinal home matchup against Buffalo, who won 2-1 against Sartell/Sauk Rapids.
Postgame interview with Bemidji head coach Mike Johnson:
Tribute to the BHS girls hockey Class of 2020: